Three-quarters (77%) of UK employees are not aware that insurers offer mental health support as an additional benefit, according to new research by LV=.
The investment, protection and retirement firm’s Wealth and wellbeing research programme, which is a long-term quarterly survey of 4,000 UK adults, aims to highlight how many protection policyholders are taking advantage of the additional benefits included in their protection policy.
According to the findings, more than four in 10 respondents felt more stressed and anxious in the last year and 9% have taken time off work for mental health reasons, equating to 2.8 million working adults.
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Out of the protection policyholders who sought mental health support in the last 12 months, only 59% did this using the benefits included in their protection cover, while more than two thirds of adults aged 25-44 are comfortable accessing mental health support remotely.
In addition, uptake of mental health support via LV= Doctor Services in 2022 rose by 71% compared to 2021.
Mike Farrell, protection sales director at LV=, said: “Our data shows that a small fraction of policyholders know about the true value that protection cover can offer to support them and their families. Policyholders can be referred to specialists for rehabilitation and extra support. Remote GP access is also available in addition to mental health support and physiotherapy.
“Enhanced claim payments under life and critical illness products, included at no extra cost for nine conditions that are as a result of an accident, will pay an additional amount on top of the original level of cover. This could make the world of difference to clients in high-risk occupations. Advisers need to demonstrate that their client’s money can work harder as part of an income protection or life and critical illness policy. Protection cover has immense value and enables households to improve their financial resilience.”